If you’ve been to a San Francisco 49ers football game in Candlestick Park, then you’ve heard Matt Crevin’s voice as he calls the plays in the stadium.
“I’m up in the press box,” he explains. “I’m the voice up there.”
Matt riffed on that part-time professional sideline when he named his business, Voice of the Box, which he started a few years ago. As a consultant and career coach, he helps college students and young adults enter sports careers, not as players, but in the panoply of jobs working with and around professional athletes. It is “the hidden side of sports,” he says, working in team organizations and in clothing, nutrition, marketing and more.
While he grew up in the east bay area of San Francisco and attended San Jose State, Matt comes with local cred. His dad Larry grew up in Seattle and attended Temple De Hirsch (pre-Sinai), Garfield High and the University of Washington.
“It’s funny that I am in my father’s hometown,” he says.
Matt’s career reads like a guide to what he now teaches others. Twenty years ago he started with an unpaid internship at the 49ers. That turned into a paying PR job, which turned into corporate jobs at FedEx and Microsoft, which landed him in the Seattle area.
During those years he started interviewing people in sports as a hobby, videoing interviews and posting them on the web. As those generated interest, people in that field began asking for help and advice.
“I had a parallel career,” he says and his interest in corporate life began to wane. “My light bulb finally” went on. With his qualifications in sales and marketing he launched the business.
“What makes this fun for me,” is combining “real world, practical, fresh insight” with “20 years of sports industry knowledge and connections,” he says.
Matt recently published a book, “Get in the Game.” Information is at his website (www.voiceofthebox.com), where you’ll also find career tips and some of those video interviews. He’s developing a radio show, “Beyond the Game,” which can be heard at www.spreaker.com, and he often speaks publicly and attends career fairs.
Now a member of Temple De Hirsch Sinai in Bellevue, Matt says he’s busy “raising two Jewish boys, which is going to be a lot of fun.”
“It’s like an addiction,” says Seattle attorney Harvey Grad.
That would be the Wheels of Love fundraising bike ride he’s done in Israel for nine years. The ride benefits ALYN Hospital, Israel’s only pediatric and adolescent rehabilitation facility for children with a wide range of congenital and acquired conditions, from cerebral palsy to accident or terror injuries (www.alynride.org).
“It’s kind of hard to explain,” he continues, “especially to people who have seen me peeled off the street” after two bike accidents.
Harvey, 64, has done at least part of the multi-day November ride for the past nine years, except the year he broke his femur and convinced his son Ben to ride instead of him.
There are three events. Harvey does the road ride, about 20 to 40 kilometers a day with fewer hills than either the “road challenge” or the off-road ride. Those are done by “elite riders. I am a sort of lite rider,” he joked in an email. On the final day, up to 600 bikers ride up the hill to the Jerusalem hospital, where they are greeted by the patients and staff.
“We wait to see them and they look forward to all of us showing up,” Harvey says.
A 1987 Seattle-to-Portland (STP) ride got him started on long distance riding. The Cascade Bicycle Club’s STP, and other similar rides, often involving 100-plus miles a day, continue to be part of his training.
Although he says he first attempted the ALYN ride in 2004 for adventure and chesed (kindness), he got hooked on the cause and the kids in the hospital. He became a board member of American Friends of ALYN Hospital last year, and he has built connections both locally and around the world.
“I have made incredible friendships,” he says. “I could list so many people who I keep in touch with and each trip to Israel is still magical.”
The hospital is “a feat of peace,” he says. Funds raised by the ride pay for extra therapists for the kids, who come from all over Israel and the territories.
There’s a lot of information about the hospital at www.alyn.org, and you can help Harvey with fundraising at www.WOLUSA.org/HarveyGrad.